Warriors of the French Foreign Legion

51 minutes 8.3/10 based on 8 votes

The French Foreign Legion has long been the stuff of adventure and romance.

The March or Die heroism of Beau Geste’s comrades against the Arabs in North Africa or being the foreign soldiers sent to do the dirtiest and hardest work for France. Joining recruits leave behind their pasts – ordinary or shady – and begin anew as legionnaires, the toughest of French soldiers.

This documentary takes cameras into the modern Legion and while weapons and enemies have changed, the outcome will still be the same. Some legionnaires will die during their five-year tenure.

For the Legion is still France’s first resort in nasty situations and, as the soldiers themselves say, they are sent because if they die “it’s only foreigners”.

More than 100 nationalities form its ranks, once they are accepted their only family is the Legion.

Discipline and training is brutal and from the interviews it seems that old hands will do almost anything under orders.

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Discuss This Documentary

  • SergentTK

    I highly doubt the guys signing up are completely sane. I always thought the foreign legion was just another way of extending the stay in war zones. The ultimate escape from reality.

    When you have been in war once it sticks with you. You cannot run from it.

    • Vert et rouge

      Those that join are neither insane nor adrenaline junkies…some join to escape their former lives be they political refugees, asylum seekers, economic migrants or former members of other armed forces (it is also open to French citizens, most of the Legion’s commisioned officers are French with about 10% being former Legionnaires who have risen through the ranks)
      Others join for the history & specific traditions, the quality of the training & the pride & high sense of loyalty of being a soldier of an elite unit with a strong sense of camraderie or ‘esprit de corps’.
      LEGIO PATRIA NOSTRA

  • Viking

    So I’m understanding that one cannot be in the Foreign Legion if one has a French passport? Damn….I had a brain fart of 44 years and finally made the connection of “Foreign” Legion…it’s populated by non-French soldiers. God I feel like a dumbass. *facepalm*

    I do have to admit that these troops are some bad mother f****rs. Tip o’ the Kevlar Helmet to their bravery and colossal cahones.

  • Em

    My dad was in the Legion in the 1950’s. He was in his early twenties and was the most gentle person but joined to “escape” a family that was too dominant as well as to have more adventure.

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